Archive | January 8, 2017

Natural Catastrophe Losses in 2016 at their Highest Since 2012*

Natural Catastrophe Losses in 2016 at their Highest Since 2012*

According to Munich RE, a global reinsurance company, after three years of relatively low natural catastrophe losses, the ‘figures for 2016 are back in the mid-range, where they are expected to be.’ In terms of casualties, 2016 had the fewest fatalities (after 2014) since 1986.

A number of devastating earthquakes and powerful storms made 2016 the costliest twelve months for natural catastrophe losses in the last four years, the company said. Losses totaled US$ 175 billion, a good two-thirds more than in the previous year, and very nearly as high as the figure for 2012 (US$ 180 billion).

While the year saw a two-thirds increase in the financial impact of catastrophes, the number of casualties from natural disasters were far lower in 2016 than in 2015, with some 8,700 deaths compared with 25,400. This is within the ten-year average of 60 600 but it makes 2016 the year with fewest fatalities (after 2014 with 8 050) in 30 years, since 1986 with 8 600.

The high number of flood events, including river flooding and flash floods, was exceptional and accounted for 34% of overall losses, compared with an average of 21% over the past ten years.

The most devastating natural events in 2016, in terms of financial loss, were two earthquakes on the Japanese island of Kyushu in April (US$ 31 billion) and floods in China in June and July (US$ 20 billion). Hurricane “Matthew” in October was third, at $10.2 billion.

“After three years of relatively low natural catastrophe losses, the figures for 2016 are back in the mid-range, where they are expected to be. Losses in a single year are obviously random and cannot be seen as a trend,” said a member of the Board of Management Torsten Jeworrek.

With 160 events recorded, North America was hit by more loss occurrences in 2016 than in any other year since 1980. The year’s most serious event here was Hurricane Matthew. Its greatest impact was in the Caribbean island nation of Haiti, which was still struggling to recover from the 2010 earthquake.

North America was also impacted by other extreme weather hazards, including wildfires in the Canadian town of Fort McMurray in May, and major floods in the southern U.S. states in summer. In Canada, the mild winter with less snow than usual, and the spring heat-waves and droughts which followed, were the principal causes of the devastating wildfires that hit the oil-sand-producing region of Alberta, generating overall losses of US$ 4 billion.

There was a series of storms in Europe in late May and early June. Torrential rain triggered numerous flash floods, particularly in Germany, and there was major flooding on the River Seine in and around Paris. Overall losses totaled some US$ 6bn (approximately €5.4bn), around half of which was insured.

“A look at the weather-related catastrophes of 2016 shows the potential effects of unchecked climate change. Of course, individual events themselves can never be attributed directly to climate change. But there are now many indications that certain events – such as persistent weather systems or storms bringing torrential rain and hail – are more likely to occur in certain regions as a result of climate change”, explained Peter Höppe, Head of Munich Re’s Geo Risks Research Unit.


Related Topics:

New Report Exposes Rockefeller Dynasty’s Role in “Climate” Scam*

Likud deputy minister: Italy’s Earthquakes Retribution for UNESCO Vote*

M5.9 Earthquake Hits Tanzania*

Italy, the Philippines and Oklahoma get an Earthquake*

Refugees Donate Time and Money to Help Italian Earthquake Victims*

Secret Navy Testing Causes Artificial 3.7 Earthquake Off Florida*

U.S. Military Create California Earthquake Using Seismic Weapon*

CERN Cranks Up, Earthquakes Begin with 7.2 and 6.6*

Dozens of Earthquakes Strike as Japan Warns Southern Island May Split

Death Toll Rises to 233 after 7.8 Magnitude Earthquake Strikes Ecuador*

Child Survivors of Nepal Earthquake Sold to Rich British Families*

Surprise! One Hurricane Hits Philippines, Second on the Way*

The Devastating Facts About Hurricane Matthew in Haiti Versus The Media’s Poetic Truth*

Louisiana Mayor Plans Lawsuit against State, Federal Government for the Man-Made Flood*

Cloud Seeding Causes Major Flooding in Tasmania*

How one Man Cooks for 170,000 Flood Victims*

40+ Killed, 90,000 Evacuated as Japan’s Hit by 2 Powerful Quakes and Devastating Landslides*

Climate Theorists’ Perplexed at No Tornadoes*

Wildfires Continue to Rage in Israel*

Wildfires Rage across Greece*

Thunderstorm Asthma! What Is Really Going On?*

Democrats Introduce Bill that’d Block ‘Muslim Registry’*

Dems Introduce Bill that’d Block ‘Muslim Registry’*

By Alberto Luperon

The battle over a reported “Muslim registry” gets underway in Congress.

On Thursday, Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey) introduced a bill that seeks to stop such a thing from happening. According to his press release, it would

block the establishment of a registry of people based on their religion, race, age, gender, ethnicity, national origin, or nationality.”

Eight other Senators are co-sponsoring, including Bernie Sanders (D-VT), and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).

President-elect Donald Trump’s controversial immigration plan was a huge talking point during the campaign. One aspect of this was a so-called “Muslim registry.”

NBC reporter asked him in November if he wanted a database to track Muslims nationwide.

“Oh, I would certainly implement that,” he said, speaking in terms of his immigration policy. He later added,

“The key is people can come to the county, but they have to come in legally.”

Then there’s the matter of Kris Kobach, the Secretary of State of Kansas. He told Reuters in November that he would ask Trump to resurrect the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS). He has in fact already met the President-elect in person, though he still doesn’t have a White House job.

The NSEERS, which was active from 2002 into the latter-half of Obama’s first term—put visitors and immigrants to the United States on a database if they came from countries with extremist organizations. Incidentally, 24 out of the 25 nations on the list were predominantly Muslim.

Officials said in 2011 that this program (which would be illegal under the bill because it singles out people from certain nations) only ended because it was “redundant, inefficient and unnecessary.” The Department of Homeland Security announced in December that they’d finally dismantle the program’s remaining framework.

[Composite of images from Boise, Idaho on November 21, 2015 via txking and Shutterstock; left depicts protester against Syrian refugees coming to the U.S.; right depicts a protester in Boise, Idaho who supports them. Syria was one of the nations on NSEERS.]


Related Topics:

U.S. Students form Protective Wall around Praying Muslim Classmates*

How Many Muslim Countries Has the U.S. Bombed Or Occupied Since 1980?*

Rouhani urges Muslims to Unite against ‘great plot’*

Media Blackout as Millions of Muslims March against ISIS in Iraq for Arbaeen*

U.S. Trained Militants Formed the ‘Core of Daesh’/ISIS*

NATO Auditor Who Discovered U.S. Funds ISIS Found Murdered*

Central Asian States are Reluctant to Make Friends with U.S. (a Wolf)*

A Muslim Chaplain Explains What It’s Like to Be American Today*

Obama Quietly Signs the “Countering Disinformation and Propaganda Act” into Law*

Prosecutors Raid Novartis Offices in Athens over Bribery*

Prosecutors Raid Novartis Offices in Athens over Bribery*

Corruption prosecutors raided the offices of Swiss drug maker Novartis in Athens a few days ago as part of an ongoing investigation over bribery allegations, sources told Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA) on Tuesday.

According to the same sources, the prosecutors requested a thorough search to gather electronic data and documents relating to the probe which was launched in Greece in mid-December. The investigation was ordered by the Supreme Court’s prosecution after a file with media reports on bribery allegations was submitted by Justice Minister Stavros Kontonis.

The reports claimed Novartis bribed doctors and public officials to boost prescriptions and company sales.

Greek authorities have also requested the assistance of U.S. authorities which, along with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) first launched an investigation into the drug maker two years ago. According to the reports, two executives of Novartis in Greece had submitted to U.S. authorities hundreds of documents which prove payments to private doctors and doctors who work in the public healthcare system (more than 4,000 in total), in an effort to promote the company’s products.

The prosecution requested that U.S. authorities share any data pertaining to the Greek part of the scandal.

State broadcaster ERT TV reported on Wednesday morning that agents from the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation have arrived in Athens in order to investigate Novartis together with Greek authorities. More than 178 people have been questioned on alleged illegal discounts offered by Novartis from 2006 to 2014 to some 4,000 public and private doctors in order to prescribe certain drugs and boost company sales.

The Greek investigation was launched a couple of weeks ago following press reports that managers from Novartis Hellas  had given testimonies to U.S. authorities who investigate Novartis. On New Year’s Day a manager attempted suicide in a hotel in Athens. The suicide was prevented by the police.

In a written request to Parliament for more official information, independent MP Nikos Nikolopoulos estimated the loss for the Greek state at “80 billion euros” and noted that also former health ministers should be investigated.

Some Greek media estimate that the Greek state lost “120 billion euros over the last thirty years due to overcharging by pharma companies” and claims five health ministers should be investigated.


Related Topics:

U.S. Threaten Continued Violence if Colombia Challenges Big Pharma Monopoly*

Pharma Execs Arrested in Conspiracy to Create Opioid Addicts for Profit*

Author of Mandatory Meningitis Vaccine Bill Caught Taking $420k From Big Pharma*